Originally Posted by auburnchick
They are dumbo rats.
If you paid more for these because they are dumbo rats, you got taken for a bit of a ride. Only one of those guys is a dumbo. The other is a standard (or top-eared) rat. I've seen pet stores around here put top-ears in the dumbo tank where they just so happen to cost more. But they sure are cute, anyway!
As for the sneezing, respiratory issues are the major health concern in rats. It is common for rats to sneeze for a couple of days when coming to a new home, it's just the stress of the move. However, many pet stores carry the SDA virus which is very contagious between rats, and fighting the virus weakens the rats immune system so much, it makes them much more susceptible to respiratory disease. SDA has a very high mortality rate. If your rat is only sneezing occasionally, but is eating/drinking fine and is otherwise active, I would give it a few days to settle down. If it continues, a vet visit is warranted. As was mentioned with the bedding, pine/cedar are BAD(!) and should not be used with any small animal. Aspen is okay, Carefresh is okay but it is dusty and causes many rats (and people) to sneeze. Personally, my rats have fabric in their cage with a litterbox filled with Yesterday's News cat litter (they sell it for small animals, but it's the same as the cat litter except in a smaller, more expensive bag).
I would find a vet now that is experienced with rats, since they are prone to respiratory infections and usually do need at least one vet visit for this in the course of their lives.
The best food for rats are lab blocks, but many people feed a homemade mix. Suebee's Rat Diet
is the most common. I feed Suebee's except I use Harlan Teklad lab blocks instead of dog food.
If you have any other questions, you can pm me or visit Rats Rule
. This is probably the most active and comprehensive rat forum on the 'net. If you go to the reference desk there are all sorts of helpful sites linked in the "Rat care sources on the internet" thread.
Hope your son enjoys his new friends!